India lacks strict tyre regulations
More stringent regulations and norms are being introduced in tyre industry the world over. The much awaited tyre labelling, which was imposed around two and half years ago in Europe, has already brought in changes in the business. Including in consumers’ preferences. However, though the tyre market in India is now being looked as one of the largest for business, the country still lacks basic infrastructure to bring in stricter regulations on tyres.
“There are three major factors which hinder bringing stricter regulations in India. First is the non-availability of adequate data that supporti the adoption of new regulations and the resultant difficulties in setting up the threshold limits for the regulations. The second is funding for creating advanced high valued test facilities in order to be ready for new regulations and the third is the reluctance of the industry since they will have to upgrade themselves in order to comply with new regulations,” Dinesh Tyagi, Director, International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT), told Polymers & Tyre Asia.
ICAT is an independent type approval agency, offering type approval / homologation as one of its core services. The organisation undertakes certification procedures of vehicles and components to authorise them for type approval / homologation.
However, according to Tyagi, all three segments – tyre makers, tyre users and the government – in the country are serious enough about tyres considering its contribution not only to the vehicle’s performance, but also for fuel consumption and environment pollution. “In India all tyre makers, tyre users and government are serious about fuel efficiency and environmental pollution as well. If we see the transformation of tyre manufacturing technology, our industry has already shifted from bias tyre to radial tyres. In fact there is almost 90 per cent radialisation of tyres in passenger cars segment and around 25 per cent tyres in heavy commercial vehicles,” he says.
The European Union has already implemented the new tyre labelling scheme for fuel efficiency, wet grip and external rolling noise generated. It came into force in November 2012. Many other countries have also initiated similar steps to have better fuel efficiency and safety of vehicles.
By Sharad Matade
(Full text in PTA Dec-Jan issue)